Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior

7 min read
Mar 19, 2024

On April 10th, Stardio will host a live two-way interactive flexibility workout with Tom Merrick, renowned as one of YouTube's top flexibility coaches.

Bodyweight Warrior Live will be streamed from The Box at The Ministry, a hirable fitness studio equipped with nightclub-style lighting and surround sound, and just a stone’s throw away from The Ministry of Sound—oh, such happy memories!


Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior

From anywhere in the real world, up to 50 guests will be able to follow along with a 25-minute session with Tom, get real-time feedback, and participate in a Q&A - plus there will be a few surprises ;-)

Tom Merrick, also known as the Bodyweight Warrior, is renowned in the fitness world for sharing his calisthenics, bodyweight strength, and flexibility workouts online, having recently reached 1 million YouTube subscribers.

As a preview to the event, here's an updated interview I conducted with Tom a while back, in which he shares his story, describes the pressures of always having to be the epitome of fitness, and how he grew his channel.

Bodyweight Warrior Live will stream from The Ministry on Stardio on April 10th at 18:30. Tickets are available for £19.95 from Eventbrite but are extremely limited. 

Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior


JT: Was there an ‘epiphany’ moment that led to where you are today?

TM: It happened when I was surfing. I realised I was too unfit to enjoy the activity I loved. I wasn't fit enough to paddle out through the swell. I thought, well, I should probably do something about this. One thing led to another, and I got very carried away.


JT: In one of your videos, you mentioned having a bad experience with drinking. Would you be willing to share that?


TM: Sure, I just drank too much on my dad’s birthday. It was a bad time; I passed out and ended up with a three or four-day hangover. And I thought, "You know what? It's just not worth it."


I don't have anything against drinking. I still go to the pub with friends. But it's not something I'm prepared to sacrifice the next day for. For me, I don't think drinking is the best way to spend time, but I do value spending time with my friends. So, I must weigh that up. If you do it once a week, it’s not going to be the end of the world.


Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior


JT: When fitness is your career, is there any room for vices, or is it about that dreaded word - moderation?


TM: I think it really depends on the person. Some people are all-or-nothing types. And if that's the case, moderation isn't going to work for you. It will just tempt you down a path that doesn’t align with your values.


JT: Is there anything wrong with being motivated by simply wanting to look good?


TM: I think it would be wrong to say that I don’t care about how I look. Everyone does to some extent. But my entry into swimming and fitness was through surfing, and then it was weightlifting.


I got into the aesthetics of it, and I still enjoy that. There's nothing wrong with wanting to look and feel strong and athletic. It does incredible things for many people's confidence. Like with anything, similar to vices, you need to understand your motivation. As long as you have self-awareness, I don’t think it’s detrimental. It's unhealthy when it comes from a place of body negativity, rather than a desire to be strong, fit, and healthy.


JT: You’ve undergone a major transformation. Can such changes lead to an obsession, out of fear of losing the results? Was that something you battled with?


TM: There was definitely a period when I was much stricter, to the detriment of social activities, for the sake of my goals. But I eventually asked myself, "Am I going to do this forever?" That led me to adopt a more long-term perspective.


I was in that hyper-focused phase, but I realised that while it might slightly boost progress, a more relaxed approach was healthier. Now, I'm more flexible. If I’m out, I’ll enjoy a meal. If I'm at a coffee shop with a friend, I'll have a croissant.


This is why understanding yourself is crucial. If you can indulge moderately without derailing your values, that's fine. But if a single cheat meal leads to a weekend of indulgence, you need to address that.


Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior


JT: You’ve had close to 100 million views on your YouTube channel. Can you recall when and how the channel took off?


TM: Yes. I'm part of the Reddit Bodyweight Fitness community and shared some videos there. When I made a five-minute morning mobility routine, it got about three thousand upvotes on Reddit, and the views skyrocketed from a few thousand to a hundred thousand.


People suggested making it a follow-along, which I did, and it was very well received. The follow-along videos really propelled the channel's growth, thanks to the Reddit community.


JT: With so many subscribers, why have you avoided monetisation strategies like Membership, Patreon, Superchats, etc.?


TM: I earn through the app and my coaching. I started the channel intending to offer free content. If someone wants to support me, that’s great, and they might buy a membership or products. I seek a fair exchange of value rather than just receiving money.

Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior


JT: You mentioned spending five to ten hours on a video. Do you feel pressured to constantly provide content for your subscribers?


TM: Yes. I recently took a break, posting much less frequently to give myself space to think about what I want to do. I’ve shifted from posting three videos a week to two a month, focusing on quality and content I'm proud of. It took time to gain the confidence to reduce my posting frequency without fearing the channel would fade.


JT: Do you believe your app, YouTube, and online coaching can be as effective as traditional gym or personal training?


TM: It depends on the person and the instruction. Personal training is valuable for immediate feedback, but some people can self-reflect and assess their training with the right information. Overall, one-on-one training might yield better progress, but online resources are incredibly effective for many.


Interview with Tom Merrick - The Bodyweight Warrior


JT: Post-pandemic, is there a permanent place for online fitness delivery?


TM: Most of my coaching is online due to the niche nature of my specialization. Online coaching allows me to connect with clients worldwide, which wouldn't be possible locally. My focus is on how I can serve more people effectively.


JT: You’ve mentioned being influenced by the book "King, Warrior, Magician, Lover" (KWML) by Dr. Robert Moore. What is your clear and definite purpose?


TM: My purpose is clear: to help people by providing the best information possible. I'm currently balancing between my love for property renovation and fitness. I’m working three days on each and contemplating where I see myself in the next ten years. While I understand YouTube won’t last forever, I’ll continue to share my message as long as I can be of value. Property renovation is my backup plan!


You can find out more about the hirable space at The Ministry here.

If tickets are still available, you can book a place at Tom Merricks's Bodyweight Warrior Live on the Eventbrite Page.

Tom Merrick's YouTube channel

Tom Merricks' website for resources, online coaching, video consultations and workshop bookings -

Bodyweight Warrior online -



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